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NJ Utilities supports climate policies

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NEW JERSEY – The threat of climate change is growing, and while most U.S. power companies are resisting climate policy, that’s not the case in New Jersey. While half of the nation’s largest utilities oppose climate policy, NJ’s own Public Service Energy Group (PSEG) is a leading supporter of climate policy, according to a report by InfluenceMap, a climate think tank.

PSEG ranks third out of the 25 largest publicly traded utilities in terms of climate policy support in InfluenceMap’s report. The organization score is 77% and the intensity of engagement is 55%, which according to InfluenceMap means NJ could have an advantage in adopting the climate policy.

“To make rapid progress on reducing carbon, we need to clean up the power sector. But too many utilities are still slow to act,” said Leah Stokes, associate professor at the University of California, Santa Barbara. “This new report from InfluenceMap names names, showing which utilities are leading and which are lagging.”

Utilities have a big influence on climate policy where they operate, the report says. The report quotes the CEO of PSEG in a press release advocating an ambitious climate policy during the COP26 negotiations.

California and Illinois are the other top supporters of climate policy, with Edison International and Pacific Gas and Electric Corporation in California and Exelon in Illinois, according to the report. The lowest scores are CenterPoint Energy (Texas), Southern Company (Georgia), Ameren Corporation (Missouri) and WEC Energy Group (Ohio). The lowest rated utilities oppose climate policies and some even support anti-climate measures.

“Energy utilities – and their trade associations – must align their lobbying with the Paris Agreement goals to keep warming to 1.5°C. This report makes it clear that most are not on the right track. trajectory, and that has to change,” Christina said. Herman, director of the climate and environmental justice program at the Interfaith Center for Corporate Responsibility.